How And Why To Use The Book Of Proverbs
We are going to do something different this morning. Instead of me giving the drasha, the message, in a formal way, Rebbetzin Martha and I are going to discuss Proverbs 1 together.
We are doing this because this is one of the things that the two of us do together at home. When we are with Martha’s brother David, the three of us will read and discuss a chapter of Proverbs.
I like reading, discussing, analyzing Proverbs with Martha and David. Martha and David bring their perspectives to it. They will see something I don’t see. It reminds me of the proverb: As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
Since there are 31 chapters to Proverbs, we will generally read the chapter that goes with that day. If, for example, it’s April 6th, we will read the sixth chapter of Proverbs; if it’s April 15th, the fifteenth chapter, etc. Some people will read through Proverbs every month, familiarizing themselves with this collection of wise sayings and absorbing the wisdom that is there.
How do we read proverbs? Slowly. Thoughtfully. We consider different circumstances and people that we know of that fit a proverb, both good examples of fulfilling the proverb and bad examples of not implementing the proverb. We learn from their example, from their success or failure.
Why Should We Read The Book Of Proverbs?
Because we are born ignorant and foolish. We come into this world lacking knowledge and lacking wisdom Because we need knowledge and wisdom, and Proverbs helps us gain knowledge and wisdom.
Because this world is a dark, confusing, dangerous place. Because a fallen world will tell us to do foolish, destructive things. Because there are many different and confusing and dangerous messages, and Proverbs helps us discern between truth and error.
Because knowledge is good. Knowledge is power. Because wisdom is good. Wisdom is so beneficial and adds so many great benefits.
Why Should We Read The Book Of Proverbs?
Because we can grow in wisdom and knowledge and because it becomes fun to grow in wisdom and knowledge. It’s like an interesting fun game, seeing into various situations, knowing how something will turn out before it happens because one of God’s principles was implemented or ignored.
Because they are short, they are easy to understand and to remember.
Martha and I have read Proverbs over and over, and each time we read the same chapter we’ve read before, it’s different. It’s “improv,” like free-flowing Jazz music, different each time, which makes it interesting and fresh.
How do we read Proverbs? As individuals: It’s good for individuals to read on their own. With a friend, especially as couples. It’s good for husbands and wives to read together. It stimulates conversations about issues the couple may be experiencing and helps them apply God’s principles to that situation. As families: It brings the family together, discussing a wide variety of practical and spiritual topics from God’s perspective.
Why should we read Proverbs? Because our culture is post-Christian, often anti-Christian. Sixty years ago the culture supported Biblical values and Biblical morality. The schools, the media, the government encouraged wise living. No longer. These damning words of Rabbi Paul now apply to us: Although they knew God, they neither glorified Him as God nor gave thanks to Him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools. That’s us. Our culture is no longer wise, and we and our children and grandchildren need to get wisdom directly from sources like the Book of Proverbs.
Why should we read Proverbs? Because they are true. Because they are wise. Because the book teaches us about God, about morality, about the importance of good character, and that God, and wisdom and morality and successful living are connected.
Why should we read Proverbs? Because it helps parents teach their children about God, morality, good character, successful living, and this is something that parents are responsible to do for their children.
Because the Book of Proverbs has very practical advice and also very spiritual advice. Because it helps us live a balanced life between the practical and the spiritual.
I recommend that this year, everyone reads Proverbs once or twice.